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Old 05-15-2017, 12:30 PM   #1
Danh Danh is offline
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Asterina ate my zoas

I just moved some zoas from my tank at home to my desk tank at work... I used a little too much super glue when I put them on. I was a little worried but then after a day or two they started peaking through the spots I messed up. I noticed the asterinas getting on them more than I'd expect... Today, I can see very clearly where the zoa is gone in the nest of super glue left behind. There is still an asterina on the other side which must be finishing up the job.

Now these may have been overly stressed zoas, because they don't seem to be bothering the other zoas in the tank, but it seems very clear to me that the asterina have eaten them.... Fun stuff.... Time for some harlequins.

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Old 05-15-2017, 1:31 PM   #2
Ricky5415 Ricky5415 is offline
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Or manually remove them Daniel. I don't think u have enough food for a HS yet

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Old 05-15-2017, 1:42 PM   #3
Danh Danh is offline
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This is a 5g tank. When I get in to the office just as the light turns on I can see 10-15 each morning.

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Old 05-15-2017, 7:03 PM   #4
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Are you sure they are not cleaning algae between the zoos? I have hundreds in my tank and never had any eat coral.

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Old 05-16-2017, 9:18 AM   #5
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100% ate the polyps. No doubt. I may not take them out yet... They aren't bothering the other ones.

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Old 05-16-2017, 10:15 AM   #6
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Personally I've never heard of any starfish eating corals except the crown of thorns starfish, but that doesn't mean they don't exist (we've only explored like 10% of the oceans so anything is possible). However, if they aren't bothering your other zoas then that would lead me to believe that there may be something else going on. Maybe your zoas got stressed out by something weird and melted away and the starfish are just cleaning up the dead organic matter. Or another predator like zoa nudibranchs could be the culprit. Or something you could have discovered a new species of micro starfish that prey on zoas, it wouldn't suprise me. What I would do is keep an eye on things and see where it goes. Maybe try to take pictures and document what's going on and keep us updated.

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Old 05-16-2017, 12:18 PM   #7
Bcavalli Bcavalli is offline
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It's possible after you fragged them the polyps simply dropped off the plug. I've had it happen several times after fragging zoas. They stress out and release to protect themselves.

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Old 05-16-2017, 12:26 PM   #8
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Sometimes Zoas just melt away...I've had established colonies just all of a sudden slowly melt Away.

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Old 05-17-2017, 6:51 AM   #9
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They were definitely stressed. They were 50% encased in super glue. I used normal super glue at first instead of gel. I believe they may have died eventually anyway. Within just a few days of fragging and adding glueing them to their new spot, they were gone... and I could only tell they were gone right after the star finally moved. I'll try to get a picture. The spot where they used to be inside of the glue is VERY clear. They couldn't have just fallen out and I don't believe they had long enough to melt away.

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Old 05-17-2017, 7:26 AM   #10
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Old 05-17-2017, 8:04 AM   #11
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My guess is they fell off or got disonnected, I frag a lot of zoos and this is a familiar sight, most of the time I find them wedged somewhere moved around by the current. I Never had good ]luck with the thin glue.

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Old 05-17-2017, 8:09 AM   #12
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The thin glue dried around the polyps as you can see, but then I got the gel to attach the glob of zoas and glue to the rock. I don't think they could have fallen out. The thin glue spread around the polyps enough to hold them in, then the gel held that to the rock. The starfish got on it quickly and now that there are no zoas in them, they don't touch it.

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Old 05-19-2017, 5:50 PM   #13
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Gluing a Zoanthid with super glue is like trying to glue a piece of wet macaroni to a rock, with somebody pulling on it (water current). The slime from the Zoanthid prevents it from sticking.

Odds are if the Asterina marched across it, it dislodged it.

There are some sea stars that eat coral - Chocolate Chips are one, and another that's often confused with a Linckia, which is coral safe; Tamaria stria is not coral safe.

There are some Asterinas that will eat corals but they are a lot more infrequently found in our systems than the ones that seem to eat bacterial film or algae.

Jenn

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Old 05-23-2017, 6:22 AM   #14
mkowalchuk mkowalchuk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JennM View Post
Gluing a Zoanthid with super glue is like trying to glue a piece of wet macaroni to a rock, with somebody pulling on it (water current). The slime from the Zoanthid prevents it from sticking.
I respectfully disagree with this 100%.
I've super glued single polyps more times than I can count, it's not hard at all.

And many people on multiple SW forums have reported asterina eating polyps.
It's not uncommon.

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Old 05-23-2017, 7:44 AM   #15
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I've successfully glued my fair share of polyps, and in hundreds of frags, I've had some polyps pop off after a few days, esp in my younger days.

I think what op is trying to get across to everyone is that he accidentally created a superglue prison, rather than just a glued zoa. you can see the accidental arms of the glue coming up, holding the zoa like prongs on a diamond ring.

I'd say that's enough evidence to find op's belief credible.

It's documented that some asterinas will eat coral, they are not all the same species. I think it's likely that in this circumstance enough damage was done to the zoa to make it appetizing, but there's no way to know 100%. Just observe.

Daniel, if you want to be rid of them in a 5g tank, manual removal wouldn't take long at all.
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Old 05-26-2017, 5:24 PM   #16
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I didn't disagree that a coral munching Asterina was *possible*. It's just not as probable as the Asterina being of the harmless kind. If there's tan and/or blue on its back it's harmless. If there are any red bits, it's a coral muncher. The coral eaters tend to grow a little larger than the harmless ones too, from the ones I've seen.

And yeah you *can* glue Zoanthids but it's not a given that they'll always stick. Usually if the individual polyp has some substrate stuck to it (sand, shell etc.) the substrate sticks to the glue, and the glue to the plug or other mounting surface. Having made thousands of frags over the years, glue isn't my first choice with zoanthids. Just sayin'.

If the polyp was irritated by the glue and/or by its location and/or by an Asterina or whatnot, it would slime itself loose.

Jenn

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